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Secret Agent: Jack Mitrani

Dan Bolles Sep 11, 2018 10:00 AM

Age: 29
Occupation: Action sports TV commentator; cofounder, the Frendly Gathering
Town: Burlington

Jack Mitrani has shredded slopes the world over. But for this globe-trotting pro snowboarder, there's still no place like home. "I grew up riding in Vermont and have a ton of pride for riding here," he says.

Green Mountain pride is one reason he hangs his helmet in Vermont despite his day job as an action sports TV announcer, which requires him to travel to events like the X Games and the Burton U.S. Open Snowboarding Championships. Another big reason he stays: All of his "frends" are here.

Along with fellow pro snowboarder Danny Davis, Mitrani is a cofounder of the Frendly Gathering, a multiday summer music festival most recently held at Sugarbush Resort. The annual shindig draws a heady mix of big-name, nationally touring bands — Kamasi Washington, the Devil Makes Three and Greensky Bluegrass appeared in 2018 — and ace local acts such as Kat Wright, Madaila and Twiddle.

Curious about the vowel-deficient spelling of "frends"? According to the Gathering's 10-point manifesto, there is no I in frends.

What makes snowboarding in Vermont unique:

There is something to say about the vibe on the East Coast compared to anywhere else, based on the appreciation people have for the good days — because, truthfully, they can be few and far between. Vermont terrain and weather can be rough around the edges at times, which in my opinion is not always a bad thing: If you can master riding in Vermont, you can ride anywhere.

On a typical Friday night, you'll find me:

You can usually find me out for a nice dinner with close friends. More specifically: Waterworks Food + Drink, Hen of the Wood, El Cortijo [Taqueria y Cantina], Pizzeria Verità ... The list goes on!

From dinner, we usually will head to the Garage for shuffleboard, darts, music, and craft beers and cocktails. If we still have energy, we will end the night at Light Club Lamp Shop for DJ Taka, or Manhattan Pizza & Pub to hang with [bartender] Jabu Gamache.

If there is a great band playing at Higher Ground, ArtsRiot or Nectar's, that could change the night up completely.

One band, past or present, I'd like to play at Frendly Gathering:

I was going to say Led Zeppelin, because they are one of the reasons I got into playing guitar and catapulted my love for music to a whole new level. But I am going with Luke Mitrani — aka my little brother. He just released his first album, Walk on the Moon.

How to take fullest advantage of Vermont summer:

Having a friend with a boat is a game changer, because there is nothing quite like being out there for a classic Vermont sunset with good friends and a little wake-surfing action!

Favorite Green Mountain day trip:

Hiking in Stowe never disappoints. Also, it's always a nice payoff to stop by the Cold Hollow Cider Mill for their apple cider hot dogs on the way back.

Best piece of top-secret intel I've received about living in BTV:

The Garage has the best tacos in town on Tuesdays.